Necropsy underway for whale that died in shallow water near MMMBT

Posted at 11:19 AM, Dec 13, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-14 06:22:10-05

PORTSMOUTH, Va. - A necropsy is underway on a female, juvenile fin whale that died Tuesday near the Monitor-Merrimac Memorial Bridge-Tunnel.

The whale was stranded for several hours before it died

The whale was towed to Craney Island in Portsmouth and pulled ashore early Wednesday.

Preliminary results from the necropsy showed there was an excessive amount of parasites in the whale's kidneys, which likely compromised the animal, according to Matthew Klepeisz, Public Relations Manager for the Virginia Aquarium. Initial findings were said to be consistant with verminous nephritis.

Crystal Barco, Research Coordinator for the Aquarium, said the whale was not in good shape when it became stranded in the shallow water and it was likely going to have to be euthanized.

The next steps will be to find out why the whale was stranded in the first place.

"Unless there's something obvious we see, we need to work with pathologists and others to sort of collectively look at the observations and examine the tissues further," Barco says.

Stay with News 3 for more updates on the findings from the necropsy.